Thought I'd try and write this post here hoping id get some sort of a reply with advice.
This may be a long one so I apologise in advance....
Basically in June 2016 I sought legal advice for a family matter,
I was seeking an order to be made such as residence or contact or anything similar that would stop my sons mother trying to stop me seeing my son despite me raising him alone and always being his main carer, She has over the last 2 years tried to stop me seeing him 6 times threatning me and even her father has had a go at me so when this happened again in June 2016 I sought advice to out an end to it.
To list my issues in order -
• my first meeting I was given wrong advice, I was told not to allow contact between my son and his mother until the court made an order for such. ( which I followed and it has gone against me and wasn't defended as I didn't decide to do this myself I followed the advice I was given ! )
• My application to the court was delayed and I became the defendant as my ex took me to court for " withholding or son " from her....this was despite her talking to my solicitor at the time and was made aware of court proceeding from myself and that I had been advised not to allow contact.
• my solicitor when asked why my application was delayed said it wasn't and that my ex's solicitor must have a better upper hand with the courts and have nothing else to do,
She threw my file on the floor and said it was a waste of her time and said she'd have to start again.
• the first hearing date arrived, I got to court over an hour early and waited to see my solicitor prior to the hearing.
A man came to see me and stated he was the owner of the firm and that he would be acting on my behalf at court ?! He reassured me he was the man for the job and I quote " he said he's the man for throwing people around court rooms and referred to himself as a Rottweiler in court "
• the hearing began, accusations where being fired towards me from my ex's side and my " Rottweiler " sat there in silence and never defended me atall.
I was accused of kidnapping my son and he didn't even admit it was the advice I was given by his partner in his firm !
• another hearing date was set and I was told I didn't have to attend.
After the hearing I never heard anything about how it went.
I called my solicitors office first thing the next morning and got no answer so left a voice message.
I got no reply the whole day so emailed my solicitor at night, 4 days later I got a reply with no information just stating that a CWH had been set and that curator reports were to be done but they would discuss this with me nearer the time.
• the curator report day was due and I still hadn't heard back from my solicitors regarding it. I called to ask for advice and was told there was nothing I should be aware of just to so the reports and I'd get a copy of it once they were done prior to the CWH.
• another month passed and still nothing back regards the reports.
One day before the CWH i got a copy of the reports emailed to me and was told that I could discuss any queries with my other solicitor ( the owner of the firm ) in court.
A lot of info was missing in the report.
People I asked to be interviewed weren't interviewed, and words were twisted.
• the morning if the CWH arrived and I was at court again over an hour early to discuss the report etc.
My solicitor never came to see me for over 2 hours and when he did he refused to discuss anything with me.
He became irate and aggressive when I was trying to explain things to him, he began banging his head off a wall at one point !
Kept talking over the too of me telling me I had no choice and was to accept this or never see my son again...
Each time I spoke he became more and more frustrated, he wouldn't let me speak and I felt intimidated standing in the court corridor.
He walked away from me 4 times and told me if I wasn't happy I was to sack him and go elsewhere ! He said if I wasn't happy with him then that was tough, he said he was "64 and fat and he wasn't happy about that either but there was nothing he could do about it ! "
He then went on to say he had only earned so much for his day in court for me and that it wasn't worth it, he said he had other clients to work for and a business to run and walked away for the last time leaving me standing in the hall.
• he came back to see me and gave me 2 choices of contact days.
I chose a set and he left then returned and asked me if I was getting my sons benefits such as child benefits and so on !
I replied telling him I was as I had shown and provided documents of also that I have always been my sons main carer since his birth and have had his benefits since he was born and so on.
• the hearibg began and we went into the court, my solicitor say as far away from me as possible at the opposite side of the desk,
He didn't look at me once and say across 2 chairs twirling his glasses in his fingers.
Again for the third time he sat in silence and did not say a word.
Accusations where flying towards me again some worse than ever and again nothing was said on my behalf.
• the outcome of the hearing was no residence was made but a contact order was in my ex partners favour.
The days I was offered by my solicitor I was given the opposite of and as a result I have now lost my son and he is devastated about all this. He's never been away from me for so long since his birth and is finding this extremely difficult to cope with !
• after the hearing my solicitor asked my to go and see him in his office later that day and then he went and spoke to my ex and her solicitor and told me to go.
• later on I went and seen my solicitor as asked and he began ranting and raging at me saying he refused to fight this anymore for me.
Again he made a comment about the amount of cash he made off me and said he refused to take things any further.
He said that what I done withholding my son was wrong and I shouldn't have done it.
When I told him I was advised to do so by my other solicitor he have her a lecture and sent her out his office.
After this he carried on raging at me saying I had to accept this as it was it loose my son forever, I explained I'd loose out home and everything because of this and he said I can move in with my mother ( who's disabled and I'm her carer also ) I said that wasn't going to happen and wouldn't help anything.
He said that was tough and that I had to just make do with what was happening....
He then answered his phone and discussed someones divorce proceeding right infront of me and my mother who was with me ( and attended court etc with me also each time )
He pretended to make us leave his office so he can take the call and discussed everything infront of us both including pension amounts, house values and so on. I even got the guys name he was on the phone too !
After his call he carried on telling me that this was done.
He said he needed this done and out his office now as he didn't have the time to spend on it and had other clients to work for.
After all his lecture I began to ask him to verify the court order for me and he asked me to finish asking him on my way out his office and said he'd write to me.
• 1 week later I had no clarification of the court order and had to call the court to ask a clerk to tell me it.
After this I went to a new solicitor firm and she's great !
She has told me that my ex solicitor has made a complete mess of things and has not presented evidence to the courts that was vital to my case.
She got my files and attended a peremptory hearing on my behalf as I changed solicitors and at that hearing my ex solicitor said " he stopped acting for me as I was telling him what to do "
That's lies I had 2 meeting with my ex solicitors in the space of 3 months and not once did I tell them anything other than the facts that were backed up with evidence !
• my new solicitor has had to dig through all my files to try and sort this out and in her words " if I had gone to her in the beginning this would never have happened." She said it has all been done wrongly and not presented to the sheriff properly at all and it's there fault this had happened.
She is also going to call my old solicitors to have words with them as what they have done is negligence and has been a really poor service they have provided.
My new solicitor and others have told me to complain to the ombudsman etc but I'm not sure how this works.
What do you all think I should do here.
I do feel like doing this as I am furious at what they have done to my son and what he has been made to go through due to them.
If it was only me then fair enough but no one harms my son !
Do any of you think I should take this further and if I do how do I go about it ?
Many many thanks for reading this and apologies again for it being a long one !